The Dangers of Distracted Driving
Distracted driving is one of the biggest factors in crashes on roadways across the country. On a typical day, hundreds of people are injured in distraction-related crashes. Distracted driving includes any kind of activity that takes your attention away from the road when you are behind the wheel. Distracted driving diverts your attention from operating a vehicle and includes visual, manual, and cognitive distractions.
Visual Distractions cause you to move your eyes away from the road, like turning to talk to a passenger or child in the back seat. Drive safely by stowing away your cell phone and asking a passenger to handle controls like adjusting the radio, climate controls, and GPS.
Manual Distractions cause you to take one or both hands off the wheel, like eating or drinking, or searching your purse or wallet. Drive safely by making sure you are prepared before you leave home.
Cognitive Distractions can cause major impairments for a driver, like blindness to surroundings and slower reaction times. If you’re preoccupied with strong emotions or too tired to drive, you are no longer focused on driving. Drive safely by ensuring you are well-rested, taking deep breaths, and saving arguments and deep conversations for later.
Distracted Driving Safety Tips
There are steps both drivers and passengers can take to lessen the occurrence of distracted driving. When we all work to prevent distracted driving, it results in safer roads for everyone. Remember these safety tips while in the vehicle:
- Put your phone away: If you need to talk or text, pull over and complete your call.
- Use a designated “texter:” If you are driving with someone, have a passenger assigned to read and send your text messages.
- Limit the number of people in your car: Limiting the number of passengers you allow in your vehicle has been shown to lessen the likelihood of distracted driving.
- Try to avoid extra activities while driving: Limit eating, drinking and smoking while driving.
- Don’t multitask: Make a promise not to multitask while driving.
- Properly secure your kids and pets: Make sure everyone is properly buckled in and restrained, this is not only for their safety, but it also prevents distraction.
- Try programming the navigation beforehand: Before you hit the road, put your destination into your GPS, so you will not be tempted to enter it while driving.
- Encourage friends and family not to text and drive: If you see someone texting and driving, speak up and encourage them to put the phone away.
- Limit phone conversations: Talk with your employer and let them know you need to limit your phone conversations and responses while driving.
- Don’t take your eyes off the road: Avoid the temptation of activities such as grooming, reading and applying makeup.
April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month
Distracted driving is one of the fastest-growing safety issues on the roads today. Distracted drivers aren’t just a threat to themselves; they are a danger to everyone else on the road. This April, let’s help spread the word that distracted driving puts everyone at risk, and let’s commit to driving distraction-free.
We know accidents happen. Let us help you protect your car, protect your passengers, and protect yourself by contacting us today.
Source: Bankrate 2022